My good friend Nahum continues to be in town for the month of July. As part of his being in town (Aspen actually), Nahum wanted to do at least two social backpacks: Little mileage in, the emphasis on camping rather than hiking, day hikes from base camp. I prefer a more traditional backpacking trip, but spending time with a good friend trumps taking off into the woods by myself and being anti-social.
For this trip, Nahum's lovely someone Patricia would be joining him for the weekend. As they have not seen each other in three weeks, this trip would be a much needed reunion for two people who have been wed less than a year.
My friend Julia and I picked Patricia up in Boulder. We then drove up to Aspen to spend the night in the apartment Nahum rented (courtesy of our tax dollars via grant money. These professors sure have it tough! ). The happy couple was reunited and we spent a little time walking around Aspen.
I must say, Aspen is a town that is bit out of my price range for the most part. One painting in a gallery caught my eye…if only I had $55k to spend! I could afford the Ben and Jerry's ice cream cone however at $3.50. This luxury is tastier than the painting…and a bit more in my price range.
Julia and I made an excuse to spend some more time in downtown Aspen for the evening. A chance to give Patricia and Nahum needed couple time. It was nice to walk around and take in the sights and people watch. I do not think Aspen will be my home anytime soon pretty as it may be. Aspen is a place to see AND be seen. Not quite me to say the least.
After the cultural time in Aspen, we drove the following morning to the trailhead and met our other friends.
The trail meandered along a creek. With the sticky, hot and humid weather (and less than 9k feet), I joked that the Aravs brought the Virginia weather with them!
The hike itself was pleasant. The highlight for the day was the several meadows we passed trough. Wildflowers abounded!
We made it to the destination for the evening (Duley Park) and proceeded to make camp.
Naps were taken, dinners were cooked and wine was drank.
At the fire, Patricia proposed a toast. She thanked everyone for joining her and Nahum on the trip, said how great it was see to everyone again and said in February there will be a little Arav joining the family. Mazel tov!
The following morning, we woke up and a few us made the plan for the day: Avalanche Lake. At 10 miles or so r/t and 2000' elev gain, I spun it as as a good, solid, day hike. And it was.
The meadows, the wildflowers and the views towards the nearby mountains were all an appetizer for the main course: Avalanche Lake.
Avalanche Lake was simply stunning. Turquoise waters. Fourteen thousand foot peaks surrounding it. And we had it all to ourselves. The warm sun, the beautiful terrain (and perhaps a little wine the previous night) all contributed to a welcoming environment for high alpine nap.
We hiked back to the campsite, started another campfire and enjoyed our last night in the backcountry.
The following morning we hiked out, drove to town for some awesome Mexican food and completed another great weekend with some dear friends.
I need my solo trips. But I also need to spend time with friends, too. And what better way to see my friends than in the wilderness?
All the photos